First Australian to summit highest peaks honored

21:02, October 15, 2009      

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The first Australian to summit all 14 mountain peaks above 8,000 meters has taken out one of the nation's top adventure awards.

Andrew Lock, 47, has been named the Australian Geographic Society Adventurer of the Year for 2009, Australian Associated Press reports Thursday.

The Canberra resident accomplished the climbing feat when he reached the top of Mt Shishapangma on Oct. 2. All 14 peaks are located in the Himalayas and the adjacent Karakorum range in Central Asia.

Lock, who works in the federal Attorney- General's Department, plans for up to three months for each expedition. Much of that time is spent acclimatizing and establishing camps along the route for the climb, which takes a matter of days.

Lock started his pursuit of adventure in the 1980s with rock climbing in Australia and mountaineering in New Zealand. Mt Everest, the world's highest peak, was number seven of the 14 peaks.

His success on the mountain in 2000 propelled him to go on and summit the remaining seven peaks. The 14-peak feat took him 16 years to accomplish and a total of 23 attempts on all of the mountains.

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